This is my 1,000th post to my blog.
Some say it is impossible to write daily, but I say it’s difficult to write once per day. There’s just so much to say, and so many things to consider, that if I am going to focus on a single writing event, then I want to make it count.
I’ve had several occurrences when I chose to challenge myself to writing every day for a time period. A series, once, and another time just to see how hard or easy it would be to write. Sometimes it was easy, others time it was hard, but mostly it was an enjoyable task.
In the beginning it was difficult to see my words in print and put them out where others would decipher them. It was a strained experiment to determine if this would keep on.
When completing a degree a few years ago I had an “exit” interview with the head of the program. It was like he was attempting to see if I really was worthy of the degree I had worked hard for. I shared a thought with him that was really the breaking of the hard shelled egg that had surrounded my imagination of communicating via writing. Essentially, I said this:
It is difficult to put my words and thoughts into writing and have other critique them. The way my mind works, or the words that leap off the page and shout about how I feel, or even enduring the way you are challenged in your assumptions or style. This was what I learned in my degree pursuit.
If I’ve learned one thing about education, it is not the job of the teacher to pump me full of facts. The teacher (and material) help me open up my mind so that I can pursue the field I’ve chosen in an aggressive way to be as productive as I choose to be.
The other thing I’ve noted about this event of reaching a milestone, while I did not tag my articles at the beginning, I’ve done it for several years now – and the tags are simply handles on which one may search for results. I’ve tagged scriptures, bible versions, names of people, companies, living places, cities, states, and trips. Scanning through some search results I find there are certain themes that rise to the top of multiple writings. Leadership. Faith. Christian Living. Family. Memories. Integrity. Time Management. While I do not try to name family and friends, I do give enough information that if you know me, then you may know who I am referencing. But I do quote the Apostle Paul a lot, along with Abraham, Moses, David, and Jesus.
So, my experience with blogging is that I want to give it my all, and make myself grow with the experience. This paints a picture of my personality and the kind of focus I give something once I set my mind to it. To completely understand this, let me share two other quick stories that I have mentioned in past writings.
First. I was managing a computer room and so wanted to be a programmer. Several managers encouraged me to take a programming class or two and make sure that’s what I wanted to do. I went to the local junior college (San Jacinto Junior College on Uvalde Road in Houston) and signed up for one of the popular languages we were using at work (Gray Tool Company). RPG II. (Report Program Generator) Our accounting systems were partially written with this language. I bought the book, and did all the exercises the book called for – while working on managing the computer room. That first day of class, I took all the exercises (reports and keypunch cards) into the classroom and set it on the instructors desk. “Now what?”, I asked…. He made me his assistant!
I did the same thing for the remainder of the courses. COBOL, Fortran, Assembler… I was hungry enough for the knowledge that I did not need the teacher to challenge me. The fortunate thing? I worked around computers and had the tools I needed at my finger tips.
Second. In the early 80’s, while living in Alaska, I decided I wanted to become a pilot. One of the computer operators at National Bank of Alaska was a Sail Plane certified instructor and I paid my $25 6-8 times to be towed up to around 3,000 feet and then disconnect from the tow plan and glide back to the earth. I learned a lot about air flow, planning, and the pure joy of being in the air.
But, I wanted to pilot a plane with an engine. So, I found a new school that allowed me to buy a sample ride and that next $25 went to the company and I went up in a taildragger powered airplane! The instructor allowed me to handle the controls as much as I wanted, all the while she kept her hands and feet busy, ready to take over if I goofed up. This convinced me! I paid the $1,000 up front for a guaranteed seat in the training school and began my flying experience. Stalls. Spins. Go-Around’s. Controlled zones. Maps. Planning. Learning the instruments. Flying through mountains and alongside the glaciers. Crossing Cook Inlet. Cross Country. Cold weather flying. Check Ride! Success!
When I made up my mind, I bought the books and extra reading material (pre-internet days) and soaked up every thing I could about flying. Flash cards were in my pocket and were consumed at every Red Light, or any moment alone.
Both of these experiences (and many others) sort of describes my attitude. If it’s worth doing, and if I chose to take the path, then I’m all in. With everything I have. Mind. Soul. Body. And Spirit!
This is my take on living life. What I chose to invest myself in, I want to be completely involved. Not half-way in. But all the way in. Consider this scripture as a representation of who I am as a Christian… I hope!
And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these. (Mark 12:29-31 KJV)
All my heart. All my soul. All my mind. All my strength… This is the first and great commandment taught from the Old Testament. Jesus then expands it. Love your neighbor. Just as you love yourself. (Notice, he did not say you had to “like” your neighbor!)
There is no greater commandment than these!
So, my 1,000 blog will someday produce my first book and then there will be another 1k added. Just like my truck is planning on staying with me until 1 million miles have passed (Currently at 289,000), I plan on keeping this process going. There is much to say, and my unique way of looking at life gives me much to write about.